Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


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Click here to print a Travel Log to help keep track of your trips.


ABOUT THE STUDY

What is the 2017 Puget Sound Regional Travel Study all about?

The study is collecting information on day-to-day travel in the Puget Sound region: how we travel, where we go, how long it takes us, etc. We want to obtain a complete picture of travel patterns in the region.

How will the study results be used?

This study will help the Puget Sound Regional Council and local governments plan and prioritize transportation and land-use improvements. For example, what role can transit, biking, and walking play in improving regional mobility?

How does my input help improve travel on the roads in my community?

Planning agencies need data about local travel characteristics to understand and plan for current and future transportation needs. Your input helps fulfill this need.

What is the Puget Sound study region?

The study region includes all of King, Kitsap, Pierce, and Snohomish counties. If you received an invitation to participate, you live in the study area.

Who are the sponsors for this study?

The Puget Sound Regional Council is the regional sponsor. The City of Redmond and the City of Seattle are sponsoring extra data collection in their respective jurisdictions.

What is the Puget Sound Regional Council?

The Puget Sound Regional Council is a consortium of local governments charged with regional transportation, economic development, and land use planning within King, Kitsap, Pierce, and Snohomish counties and assembles data used by planners in the region. For more information, visit www.psrc.org.


ABOUT PARTICIPATING

How was I selected to participate?

Invited households (like yours) were randomly selected from all the residential addresses in the study area.

Why should I participate?

We need local travel characteristics for local analysis and planning. Your responses have a significant impact because yours is one of a small number of households participating.

How do I participate?

If you received an invitation in the mail, you are ready to start! Click the Go to Survey link to log into the survey and enter the password you were provided with on your invitation to the survey. Alternatively, you may call the toll-free survey phone number at 1-844-247-8189 to tell us about your household and complete Part 1 of the study. Then we will send you information about how to complete Part 2.

My travel on my assigned day isn't "typical" - should I still participate?

Yes, this study is about what you actually do. Please report your travel even if it wasn't a "typical" day. We will ask separately how you typically travel around the region.

I don't travel very much - should I still participate?

Yes. Whether you make a lot of trips or don't go anywhere at all, please report what actually happens on your travel date.

How is my personal privacy protected?

Your contact information is stored separately from your responses and will be destroyed after the study is over. Your responses are grouped with all other participating households' and will not be analyzed individually. Please refer to the privacy policy for more information.

What will I get for participating?

As thanks, invited households will receive their choice of either a Starbucks or Amazon.com $10 gift card within 10 business days after all household members have completed the survey. A small portion of households will be randomly selected to complete a smartphone-based study and will receive a $15 gift card.

What if I didn't receive an invitation?

Invitations are being mailed out over the course of several weeks. If you have not received an invitation yet, one may be on the way - you may contact us to find out. If you are not scheduled to receive an invitation, you may request to volunteer. Due to limited study resources, volunteers are not eligible to receive a thank-you gift card.


ABOUT THE SURVEY

Why is my household assigned a specific travel date?

We are asking for information about the travel made by each person in your household on one chosen weekday. We call this your “travel day” or “travel date”. This helps provide a snapshot of travel throughout the region on a randomly selected day.

What is a trip?

A trip is anytime you travel for five or more minutes and stop at a new location. Even if you stop briefly for gas, at an ATM, or to drop a child off at school, travel to that stop counts as one trip, and travel from that stop to another destination is a separate trip. If you travel for more than five minutes but return to the same place (such as a recreational jog or bike ride), this counts as two trips: from the starting location to the furthest point you reach, and the reverse trip back.

Can you share example trips with me?

Yes. Here are some example trips for you to think about:

  • Drive to work
  • Drop your child off at school
  • Walk your child to a neighbor's house
  • Bike to the grocery store
  • Ride the bus to the bank
  • Carpool to a meeting in Tacoma
Often what we think of as one trip is actually two or more trips. For example, "I stopped to buy gas and a snack on my way home from work" counts as two trips: one trip from work to the gas station and another trip from the gas station to home.

Should my children participate?

Yes, trips to and from school, sports practice, play dates, and other activities help us understand the full nature of how the transportation system is used, and how it can be improved.

How do I participate if my household is invited to the smartphone study?

If you are selected for the smartphone-based study, you will be assigned to a oneweek travel period and all adults will be asked to download rMove, a smartphone app that automatically records your trips. The app will prompt you to answer a few questions each day. For more information about how rMove works, visit rmove.rsginc.com


ABOUT rMOVE

How do I participate if my household is invited to the smartphone study?

A small portion of study participants will be invited to complete Part 2 of the study via smartphone instead of using a one-day diary. If you are selected for the smartphone-based study, you will be assigned to a one-week travel period and all adults will be asked to download rMove, a smartphone app that automatically records your trips. The app will prompt you to answer a few questions each day. For more information about how rMove works, see below or visit rmove.rsginc.com

Why is the study using smartphones to collect my information?

The data collected by the rMove app can provide more detailed travel information than a typical travel log (such as the travel route choice or congestion delays for each trip). It can also be easier for study participants to let the smartphone app record trips instead of trying to remember or write down all the details of when and where you traveled. Your contact information will be stored separately from your responses and will be destroyed after the study is over. A copy of this study's privacy policy is available here.

How do I participate with rMove?

After completing Part 1 of the survey and selecting to participate using rMove, you will receive instructions on how to download and install the app. Once installed and running properly, rMove will log your travel. A few minutes after you stop traveling, rMove will create a trip survey to ask for details such as how and why you traveled. You will also be asked a few questions at the end of each day. You can answer these surveys any time during the day, but please do not answer the questions on rMove while driving!

How long should I participate?

We ask that you download the rMove app before your household's assigned travel date. The app will automatically begin collecting trip data on your travel date (the first day of your "travel period"), and will automatically stop collecting data after seven days (the last day of your "travel period"). Once you complete all the surveys listed by rMove, you can uninstall the app from your phone.

Do my children have to participate on a smartphone?

We ask that adults in the household report when children travel with them (these trips are recorded on the adult's smartphone). We also ask that an adult report any additional trips a child makes that is not recorded by the app (such as riding the bus to school). It is very important that all travel for all your children are recorded on the project website! Many trips in households with children are made for the children's needs, and so it is critical that all their travel is accounted for.

How do I know when I've completed the study?

Once all surveys for all of your travel days for all members of your household are answered, you have completed the smartphone portion of the study. Please note, all adults in your household must participate together in order to complete the study. We will email you after your travel dates are over with final instructions and to provide your gift card.